Being a Red Sox fan I will always have a special place in my heart for Dave Roberts but last night Dave Roberts almost cost the Dodgers the game against the Mets and the series.
I do not know why he would take Kershaw out of the game in the 8th inning to bring in another lefty. Kershaw was brilliant again last night as he only gave up 1 run in 7 and 2/3 innings. Roberts decided to take Kershaw out with Curtis Granderson coming to the plate. Granderson is a left-handed hitter and lefties are hitting .136 against Kershaw this season. Granderson led off the game with a double off of Kershaw and then grounded out and struck out. Now the announcers on Sunday night baseball were talking about fatigue and that his pitch count was at 114. If Roberts took Kershaw out because he was at 114 pitches, that is an absolute joke. Kershaw is by far the best pitcher in baseball and I think he has proven himself by now. If Kershaw would have thrown 120 pitches to get Granderson, so be it. Roberts decided to go to the left-hander Adam Liberatore. I don’t care if lefties are hitting .138 against him, there is no way I would take out Kershaw to bring in another lefty to face Granderson. NO WAY!
Now the only way I would have even considered taking out Kershaw last night was to put in Kenley Jansen. Jansen has been excellent against both righties and lefties this season and encourages his manager to use him for more than one inning. I liked the shot of Jansen shaking his head as he went to sit down in the pen after Liberatore gave up the game-tying triple. So many people believe in playing matchups but in moments like last night, I want my best versus their best.
Luckily for Roberts and the Dodgers, the Dodgers retook the lead in the 9th inning on an Adrian Gonzalez 2-run single. I hope Roberts learned his lesson and next time leaves Kershaw in the game.